West Hollywood couples wait in line all night for marriage license

Listen to story

Download this story 0.0MB

At West Hollywood Park, some couples waited in line overnight to get to get marriage licenses. City and Los Angeles County officials set up a satellite office in the auditorium there Tuesday morning to start issuing the licenses to same sex couples. KPCC's Brian Watt was there.

Brian Watt: One of the first couples to get in line and fill out the forms was Wendy Averill and Marilee France. They had no problem with the blue marriage license application.

County worker: Party A's name here, Party B, with the date of birth.
Wendy Averill: OK.

Watt: Then, Wendy Averill noticed something on the pink application for a record of the marriage.

Averill: Name of groom? This says name of groom. It should say–
County worker: Well, we're gonna change it–
Averill: I'm gonna change "A" and "B."
County worker: That's fine.
Averill: ... because you're not a groom.

Watt: Not long after, the computers in West Hollywood lost their connection to the county's mainframe and began printing licenses that read "bride" and "groom." Computer experts quickly fixed that problem.

On the sidewalk in front of the auditorium, John Franklin hoisted a sign that read "Pervert Weddings Done Here." He wore a black hood and spoke from behind a red devil mask.

John Franklin: This is a satanic operation so, uh, I figured that I should be representing and here to help, you know what I'm saying?

[Violin music]

Watt: On the lawn behind the auditorium, West Hollywood officials had set up tents where couples who'd obtained their marriage licenses could marry. City Council members officiated short ceremonies. Clergy stood by in case they were needed.

West Hollywood expects hundreds, if not thousands, of couples to request marriage licenses at the satellite office. The city's arranged to keep it open until the end of the month.